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Toy Mountain campaign gets big boost from police's 'Weekend of Giving'

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South Simcoe Police were out in full force over the weekend collecting donations for CTV's Toy Mountain campaign.

The police service held its annual Weekend of Giving on Friday and Saturday. Officers spent four hours on Friday evening outside the Canadian Tire in Innisfil and another 5 hours on Saturday collecting donations outside Bradford West-Gwillimbury's Canadian Tire store.

"It is absolutely the most favourite part of my job to be out here engaging with our community, to see the generous spirit of our community out tonight here in Innisfil at Canadian Tire in support of Toy Mountain," said Chief John Van Dyke.

This year's Toy Mountain campaign aims to help more than 3,000 children, youth and families with Simcoe Muskoka Family Connexions.

"We have a great business, and so we are very fortunate, and we want to help the people that are not, and it's fantastic to do that every year," said Luca Stallone as he dropped off multiple toys for the campaign on Friday night.

The weekend collection effort saw many young children donating gifts for other kids in need, with parents using it to teach a lesson on the season's true spirit.

"I didn't grow up with a lot, so it's important that if we have, we share and that they give," said Megan Denny, donating to the campaign with her children and husband. "It's not about receiving, it's about giving!"

The franchisee owners of each Canadian Tire that hosted the police's collection efforts also participated. The owner of the Innisfil location said he was new to the region and wanted to help make Christmas brighter for those struggling in his new home.

"It's the time to be happy, and we know that some families with kids are struggling, so if we can do a little bit just to put smiles on those faces, it's worth it," said Stephane Dianyd.

Donations for the 2023 Toy Mountain campaign can be dropped off Monday to Friday at the CTV Station at 33 Beacon Road. They can also be dropped off at Tilemaster in Barrie and select Access Storage location until Dec. 20.

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